I like positive affirmations—those short, punchy lines that remind us to live without fear, follow our dreams, and generally live happily ever after. The problem though, is that they stick in our minds for a moment, but then fade as the day goes on and our lives are flooded with frustration, exhaustion, and envy. Those little sayings are a quick spark that sizzles for a second, igniting the dream closest to our heart, but dies out just as fast because we don’t continue to fuel the flame. We don’t assign meaning to the saying so it continues to burn, lighting the path we might take.
For this reason, whenever I create a motivational piece of artwork, I like to think about what I’m saying and actually apply some meaning. Shine Bright, the image above says. But what does it really mean to shine bright?
For me, it’s a reminder to actively pursue creativity through writing and art. These two things make me happy, and because I spent years ignoring them out of fear of judgment (from myself and others), the act of creating and sharing my work makes me feel like I’ve turned on a light within myself…one for me to see the road ahead, and also so others see that creativity is a part of who I am.
I become a flashlight that can choose to remain dark, or choose to shine bright. It’s a daily decision I have to make.
For you, it might mean something different. If you’re struggling to feel more alive, creative, and happy, I hope you remember that you are also a flashlight. A small sketch, a haiku, a line on paper will light you up. Choosing to create will allow you to shine bright.